Carrington Seven Seas & beyond

Where do you live?

I was born and raised in Newcastle, Australia—a port city built around blue-collar workers, ships and steel. To this day I remain unconditionally devoted to V8 muscle cars, rugged beaches and Aussie pub rock. Don’t make me sing Khe Sanh. Because I can.

Did you get an education?

Indeed, the Australian government of the day allowed me a free one. I have an honours degree in Rural Science, and afterwards worked within the university system as a research fellow in biochemistry. From there I went to the cotton fields as an agronomist, then the Department of Primary Industries, then Australia’s national science agency, the CSIRO.


When did you start writing romance? Where? Why?

Kelly Hunter

The year 2000 saw me working outstation in Malaysia on a biological control program for the CSIRO. The project involved growing flesh-eating maggots into adult flies, sterilizing them, half-freezing them and then throwing them out of aeroplane windows. Research screwworm fly control if you want to know more. It’s a biological control success story.

My kids were young at the time and went to local school in the mornings and I home-schooled them to the Australian curriculum during the afternoon. Every two weeks we’d receive a new parcel full of books and schoolwork (in English!). The internet wasn’t an option then—not the internet we know today—and these keenly awaited parcels were a lifeline to the world we’d left behind. When the kids had to write recounts, narratives, letters and descriptions, I wrote alongside them.

I didn’t have ready access to romance novels (in English) so I wrote one. It’s full of giant snails and snakes and tends to include the primary school writing exercise of the day. I love it to bits as a record of that time in our lives and because it started me on a writing path.

Writing related pursuits and areas of interest.

If something interests me I get involved. Put plainly, I like looking under the hood (could be a Newcastle thing). I joined Romance Writers of Australia and became registrar, secretary, vice president and then president before stepping back in 2010.

In 2014, I became executive editor for Tule Publishing Group’s  Holiday imprint, and still enjoy this role. A chance to help shape a new contemporary romance line and work with amazing authors across the globe? Hell yes.

You’re easily distracted by shiny new endeavours. How’s the writing going? What’s next?

Thirty-something books in, and I’ve been fortunate to receive both industry and reader recognition for my stories. I like the tight focus of short contemporary romance and it suits my attention span to write them. A lot of people ask if I’m ever going to write longer books. Maybe that’s next.

Kelly Hunter hard at work

Awards & Nominations

Australian Romance Readers Association

  • Favourite Contemporary Romance 2021–Must Love Christmas
  • Favourite Continuing Romance Series 2018–Outback Brides (Maggie’s Run)
  • Favourite Short Category Romance 2018–Maggie’s Run
  • Favourite Short Category Romance 2017–Casey (Must Love Cowboys)
  • Favourite Short Category Romance finalist 2015–What A Bachelor Needs (Must Love Babies
  • Favourite Short Category Romance of 2014–The Honeymoon Trap (The Courage of Eli Jackson)
  • Favourite Short Category Romance of 2013—The One That Got Away
  • Favourite Short Category Romance of 2012—The Honeymoon Trap
  • Favourite Short Category Romance of 2011—With This Fling …

Romance Writers of Australia

  • RUBY finalist Contemporary Romance 2019–Convenient Bride For the King
  • RUBY winner Romantic Novella of the Year 2016–What A Bachelor Needs (Must Love Babies)
  • ELLA Romantic Novella of the Year nominee 2015–Sympathy For The Devil
  • RUBY winner for Short Sexy Romance 2014–What The Bride Didn’t Know
  • ELLA Romantic Novella of the Year nominee 2013—Wish
  • RUBY finalist for Short Sexy Romance 2010—Playboy Boss: Live-in Mistress
  • RUBY finalist for Short Sexy Romance 2012—The Man She Loves To Hate

Romantic Times, USA

  • Favourite Kiss Series Romance nominee 2013—What The Bride Didn’t Know
  • Favourite Kiss Series Romance nominee 2013—The One That Got Away
  • Favourite Presents Series Romance nominee 2010—Exposed: Misbehaving With The Magnate

Romance Writers of America

  • Rita nomination for Contemporary Category Romance 2011—Her Singapore Fling
  • Rita nomination for Contemporary Category Romance 2010—Revealed: A Prince and a Pregnancy
  • Rita nomination for Contemporary Category Romance 2008—Trouble in a Pinstripe Suit

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